By Jennifer Waddle, Crosswalk.com
Jennifer Waddle considers herself a Kansas girl, married to a Colorado hunk, with a heart to encourage women everywhere. She is the author of several books, including Prayer WORRIER: Turning Every Worry into Powerful Prayer, and is a regular contributor for LifeWay, Crosswalk, Abide, and Christians Care International. Jennifer’s online ministry is EncouragementMama.com where you can find her books and sign up for her weekly post, Discouragement Doesn’t Win. She resides with her family near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains—her favorite place on earth.
1. Dwelling with Jesus in Mansions - John 14:2-3
“In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:2-3).
From my back window, I can see impressive-looking homes dotting the landscape of the foothills. Considered mansions by the world’s standards, I know they don’t even come close to the mansions prepared for the saints in heaven.
Before His death, Jesus comforted his disciples with the promise that he would go and provide a place for them. The most beautiful part was His assurance that He would return for them and receive them unto Himself.
No matter how spectacular the mansions in our Father’s house, dwelling with Jesus will be the most beautiful habitation of all. Welcomed into heaven by the Way, the Truth, and the Life, will be the culmination of the hope we have in Christ.
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2. Heaven Will Be A City Built for Worship - Hebrews 12:22-23
But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect (Hebrews 12:22-23).
This Bible passage is rich with beautiful and detailed descriptions of heaven. The “city of the living God,” will be a spectacular place according to God’s perfect design. And, as one writer put it, the heavenly Jerusalem will be “a place of unimagined blessing.”
Those registered in heaven, having been made perfect by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, will assemble with an innumerable company of angels before their most holy God. To try and picture the multitudes spread out before the Living God is amazing, and altogether incomprehensible.
Mount Zion, the city of David and the eternal possession of God Most High, will be the holy city where all will assemble to worship Him.
“At that time Jerusalem shall be called The Throne of the Lord, and all the nations shall be gathered to it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem. No more shall they follow the dictates of their evil hearts” (Jeremiah 3:17).
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3. All Nations and People Will Worship Jesus - Revelation 7:9-10
“After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’” (Revelation 7:9-10)
The triumphal entry, mentioned in the Gospels, portrayed Jesus riding on a donkey into the city of Jerusalem. The Jews had lined the streets with their cloaks, waving palm branches and praising God for the miracles they had seen Jesus perform (Luke 19:37).
“…when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: ‘Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! The King of Israel!’” (John 12:12)
However, as Jesus saw them, He wept, For He knew they did not truly understand who He was.
“And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, “Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace!” (Luke 19:41-42)
In heaven, there will be no confusion about the Prince of Peace. Every saint, from every tribe and tongue will be clothed in robes of white, waving palm branches of genuine praise.
“Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
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4. Heaven Will Be Filled with Peace, Joy, and Praise - Revelation 7:15-17
“Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them. They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat; for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes” (Revelation 7:15-17).
Those who have come out of the great tribulation will remain before the throne of God forever.
With pure joy and adoration, they will serve Him night and day. Jesus, the Good Shepherd, will lead them to fountains of living waters, never to thirst again. Every tear will be wiped away by the merciful hand of God and they will rest in the shade of His presence.
I imagine the saints will have just as much joy, after ten thousand years of serving God, as they had on the first day. Just like the old hymn says…
“When we’ve been there ten thousand years, bright shining as the sun, we’ve no less days to sing God’s praise than when we’d first begun.”
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5. A Great Storm in Heaven & The Ark of the Covenant - Revelation 11:19
“Then the temple of God was opened in heaven, and the ark of His covenant was seen in His temple. And there were lightnings, noises, thunderings, an earthquake, and great hail” (Revelation 11:19).
There is something absolutely majestic about watching a storm from afar. The intensity of lightning and deep rumbling of thunder reminds us of God’s matchless power and sovereignty over all of creation. Beyond our human understanding, the thunderings of heaven will be unlike the most powerful storm we’ve ever experienced. God’s majesty will be proclaimed throughout the entire universe. His voice will thunder throughout the heavens.
“The voice of the Lord is over the waters; the God of glory thunders; the Lord is over many waters.The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is full of majesty” (Psalm 29:3-4).
At last, the temple of the Lord will be opened and the ark of the covenant will be seen again. For His covenant is everlasting and His kingdom will have no end.
“…and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end” (Luke 1:33).
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6. Jesus Leads Armies Clothed in White on White Horses 19:11-14
“Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses” (Revelation 19:11-14).
Rider on a white horse, Faithful and True … the Lord Jesus will ride from heaven with His armies dressed in white. The King of Kings, wearing many crowns, will ultimately come to judge the nations. With eyes like flames of fire, His righteousness will penetrate every single heart.
There will be no mistake about who Jesus is or what He has done. His robe, dipped in blood, will be a testament to His perfect sacrifice on the cross. And every knee will bow, every tongue will confess, that Jesus Christ is Lord.
“Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11).
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7. Precious Gemstones will Adorn Heaven - Revelation 21:9-11
“‘Come, I will show you the bride, the Lamb’s wife.’ And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal” (Revelation 21:9-11).
An incredibly rare gemstone called taaffeite was discovered in Sri Lanka in 1945. Since then, only a handful of these gems have been found. This rarely seen beauty makes them highly sought after and valuable.
In heaven, the light of the great city of Jerusalem will be like a glorious stone, shining pure like crystal. Its radiance will outshine any precious gem on earth and its value will be immeasurable. Covered in the glory of God, the holy Jerusalem will descend with brilliance.
“Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God will shine forth” (Psalm 50:2).
Every treasure man holds valuable will pale in comparison to the magnificent city of heaven. Precious stones will lavishly adorn the walls of Jerusalem.
“The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with all kinds of precious stones: the first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, the fifth sardonyx, the sixth sardius, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst” (Revelation 21:19-20).
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8. Heaven Will Have Pearl Gates & Streets of Gold - Revelation 21:21
“The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass” (Revelation 21:21).
I recently read a historical account in my son’s History book that described what the early colonists discovered on the shores of Chesapeake Bay. Giant oysters, so numerous they covered the ground like stones, were waiting in abundance for the weary travelers. Many of them contained pearls—much to the colonist’s delight.
To visualize the pearly gates of heaven, being formed out of ONE pearl, is unfathomable. Streets of gold, so pure that they are transparent, will extend from the twelve gates. What a beautiful description!
Revelation 21 goes on to say that in heaven there will be no more sun or moon. The glory of God and the light of the Lamb will be its illumination.
“The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light. And the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. Its gates shall not be shut at all by day (there shall be no night there)” (Revelation 21:23-25).
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9. The Tree of Life in Heaven - Revelation 22:2
“In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations” (Revelation 22:2).
The fruit of the tree, which will line the center of heaven’s golden street, will be continuously available in abundance. There will be no more searching for the cures of diseases known to man. Every ailment will be remedied by the leaves of the tree, and the nations will be healed once and for all.
“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God”’ (Revelation 2:7).
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10. The Light of God in Heaven - Revelation 22:4-5
“They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads. There shall be no night there: They need no lamp nor light of the sun, for the Lord God gives them light. And they shall reign forever and ever” (Revelation 22:4-5).
The widely popular song, “I Can Only Imagine”, by Mercy Me, beautifully describes one man’s awe, as he finds himself side by side with Jesus. Surrounded by the magnificent glory of God, shining brighter than the sun, these lyrics inspire us to try to imagine the beauty of finally meeting Jesus face-to-face.
I don’t know about you, but I am ready to meet the Savior! To receive His name on my forehead, as a stamp of approval and acceptance, is unimaginable!
Forever and ever, we will rule and reign as joint heirs with Christ. Every beautiful description of heaven will come to fruition and far exceed our greatest expectations.
He who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming quickly.” Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus! (Revelation 22:20)
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Jennifer Waddle is best known for offering Biblical encouragement for women in the trenches of life. She is the author of several books, including Prayer Worrier: Turning Every Worry into Powerful Prayer. She is also a contributor for WomensMinistryTools.com and crosswalk.com. She resides with her family near the foothills of the Rocky Mountains—her favorite place on earth. You can connect with her at www.jenniferwaddleonline.com or find her books here.
This article is part of our larger resource library of terms important to the Christian faith. From heaven and hell to baptism and communion, we want to provide easy to read and understand articles that answer your questions about theological words and their meaning.
Heaven - What is it Like, Where is it?
Hell - 10 Things You Should Know
Baptism - What Does it Mean and Why is it Important?
Communion - 10 Important Things to Remember
The Trinity - Father, Son, Holy Spirit Explained
Predestination - Biblical Support and Facts
Armor of God - What is it and How to Use it